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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Circles & full lock turning...This Works! Did you know?

Here is a great tip I got from the Wing forum and decided to try on my bike. Guess what; it works even BETTER on the GTL/ GT than on the wing.
This will absolutely allow you to get very comfortable with the new bike without the wear on the clutch and brake while hard practicing.

1-I pulled my side cases.
2-Large empty marked parking lot
3-Start off in RAIN mode, suspension down to normal and single rider, no luggage. (after much practice, I now use road or dynamic for quicker throttle response) You should have engine guards.
4-warm the engine and get underway in FIRST only
5-Reduce the throttle to IDLE only while underway
6-Drive around and get comfortable driving w/o any additional throttle; the bike will MAINTAIN 900 rpm & about 6.5 mph
7-Keep your head and body as vertical as possible
8-Turn your head as far left looking behind you, to the rear of your bike if you can (obvious I know, excuse the redundancy)
9- NO BRAKING, CLUTCH OR THROTTLE, NONE PERIOD!
10-Srart your circle turns gradually getting tighter and tighter. Make 10- 12 turns then reverse direction. Don't push it, get the feel - again
NO BRAKING, CLUTCH OR THROTTLE.
11-Practice every day for 15-30 minutes and before long you will
be pushing the bars to lock position completing 15' to 18' circles,
figure eights, etc. I got as tight as 14 feet after warm up.
12-After you become proficient, practice with your SO if you ride two up.
Can't get mine to do it any more because she said she becomes
sea-sick!

*TIP: If at any time you feel the bike is going down, INCREASE THROTTLE, but only then. Keep your feet up, you can't hold her up with your foot, use throttle if necessary, she will stand right up (why you need a big empty parking lot)
*TIP 2: the bike will attempt to maintain 900 RPM EVEN if you apply the rear brake or travel uphill etc. You will hear and feel the engine add fuel attempting to maintain 900 rpm.
*TIP 3: you can do the same in 2nd (9.5 mph) or third (12 mph) BUT the bike moves too quick necessitating the use of the brake and clutch.
*TIP 4: Practice, practice, practice- every day if you can- even for only 10 minutes to develop muscle and mind memory.

*OBSERVATION: your attention will be on tight turning, not clutching and or braking, thereby quickly improving you confidence level allowing you to build the confidence to go for the brake trailing and clutch gray zone as taught by Jerry in "Ride Like a Pro".

If you get dizzy only do 6 or 7 turns BUT ALWAYS do the same in reverse, you will soon get used to it and not get dizzy.

Most parking spaces are 8-9 feet wide, so your goal is to turn within two of them, side x side and you will get down to 1-1/2 spaces wide.

The road all of a sudden will be so wide, and making tight U turns will become effortless.

When you get good, you can then start to employ the traditional rear brake and feathering clutch techniques' and almost stand the girl still upright without fear of dropping her.

That is it! Try it and share some of your tips you have learned.
Let me know if it works for you!
 

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In Ride Like a Pro classes we are taught the proper use of the clutch and rear brake, this is called the friction zone. Everyone should practice this.
I was supposed to be in training for 2 hours today but with 1/4 inch of snow on the pavement and 4 more inches on the way that has been canceled for this weekend.
 

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I'm on this right after chores. I can easily hit 2 parking spaces, but full lock has eluded me.


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Full lock is tough. I am getting better at it with the Harley and can do it sometimes with the K1600.
 

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Thanks Joe,
You have inspired me to practice.
Im new to this bike and a little intimated by its weight. The turn exercises will surely help
In gaining control and comfort.
 

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When you do the keyhole (really tight u-turn with limited entrance and exit. The friction zone is your friend. With Goldwings the steering head angle is pretty steep like on the K16. I'd have to look it up to see with the rake and trail comparatively are and the ratio to wheelbase. On the K16 I like to keep it at 2K rpm and I will counterweight, drop the bike over, and hold the lock for 8 or 9 turns. I've yet to make 10 as I get really dizzy. I follow much of the original posters technique with a few performance enhancements.

Some things I do to challenge myself at slow riding.
1) Do a locked up turn as slowly as you possibly can. Anybody who breaks an ankle don't blame me.
2) Do a full lock circle as slow as possible and at a predetermined point turn it into a lock to lock figure 8. As slow as you can. The forces will want to high side the bike. Counterbalancing will counteract (<- ouch) the forces.
3) Never put your feet down at stop lights.
4) Set up a keyhole and enter it at 90 degrees from both directions. This is tough, or I just have a mental block.

I do a bunch of these on the marked MSF course nearby.
 

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If you've ever seen BMW's exhibition rider (nickname "teach" - he's a teacher but I can't remember his real name) he will do this on the K1600 - full lock circles in both directions with NO HANDS !! Looks cool, but I'm not that brave.

I'm really close to full lock turns to the left, not quite there to the right yet. More practice needed, but I try and do it regularly.
 

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The road all of a sudden will be so wide, and making tight U turns will become effortless.
I'm inspired. Thank you, Joe.
Well written, step by step and thorough. I'm in.
As far as feet down at stoplights, I've always attempted to stay on the pegs until the last minute just because I could.
I'll be practicing as you've prescribed, sir. Thanks again.
 

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Yes, whenever I am with learners or inexperienced it is one of the first things I have them do. Steering the bike with your weight whilst at full lock on steering is one of the most confidence boosting experiences a newbie can have because they have to overcome the fear of relinquishing control of the handlebars and who doesn't love overcoming their fears?
 

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Discussion Starter #11
In Ride Like a Pro classes we are taught the proper use of the clutch and rear brake, this is called the friction zone. Everyone should practice this.
I was supposed to be in training for 2 hours today but with 1/4 inch of snow on the pavement and 4 more inches on the way that has been canceled for this weekend.
Agreed, I am a student of Ride Like a Pro, BUT this is a different technique that can't be done with Harley's and the like. Jerry rides a Harley most of the time. (I also have a Harley) I spoke of friction zone and brake trailing towards the end of the article and really don't want to argue. Jerry's tutorials are a more advanced technique requiring several differing disciplines.
For those that want an easy way to get used to their new bike, go for it then advance to the Ride Like a Pro!
 
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Somewhat different, but my GS training at Rawhyde came in very valuable when switching to the K16. Lots of practice in the friction zone and slow, tight turns. And some practice falling down gracefully :D

I just hope I don't need the hillclimbing skills....
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Here is a great tip I got from the Wing forum and decided to try on my bike. Guess what; it works even BETTER on the GTL/ GT than on the wing.
This will absolutely allow you to get very comfortable with the new bike without the wear on the clutch and brake while hard practicing.

1-I pulled my side cases.
2-Large empty marked parking lot
3-Start off in RAIN mode, suspension down to normal and single rider, no luggage. (after much practice, I now use road or dynamic for quicker throttle response) You should have engine guards.
4-warm the engine and get underway in FIRST only
5-Reduce the throttle to IDLE only while underway
6-Drive around and get comfortable driving w/o any additional throttle; the bike will MAINTAIN 900 rpm & about 6.5 mph
7-Keep your head and body as vertical as possible
8-Turn your head as far left looking behind you, to the rear of your bike if you can (obvious I know, excuse the redundancy)
9- NO BRAKING, CLUTCH OR THROTTLE, NONE PERIOD!
10-Srart your circle turns gradually getting tighter and tighter. Make 10- 12 turns then reverse direction. Don't push it, get the feel - again
NO BRAKING, CLUTCH OR THROTTLE.
11-Practice every day for 15-30 minutes and before long you will
be pushing the bars to lock position completing 15' to 18' circles,
figure eights, etc. I got as tight as 14 feet after warm up.
12-After you become proficient, practice with your SO if you ride two up.
Can't get mine to do it any more because she said she becomes
sea-sick!

*TIP: If at any time you feel the bike is going down, INCREASE THROTTLE, but only then. Keep your feet up, you can't hold her up with your foot, use throttle if necessary, she will stand right up (why you need a big empty parking lot)
*TIP 2: the bike will attempt to maintain 900 RPM EVEN if you apply the rear brake or travel uphill etc. You will hear and feel the engine add fuel attempting to maintain 900 rpm.
*TIP 3: you can do the same in 2nd (9.5 mph) or third (12 mph) BUT the bike moves too quick necessitating the use of the brake and clutch.
*TIP 4: Practice, practice, practice- every day if you can- even for only 10 minutes to develop muscle and mind memory.

*OBSERVATION: your attention will be on tight turning, not clutching and or braking, thereby quickly improving you confidence level allowing you to build the confidence to go for the brake trailing and clutch gray zone as taught by Jerry in "Ride Like a Pro".

If you get dizzy only do 6 or 7 turns BUT ALWAYS do the same in reverse, you will soon get used to it and not get dizzy.

Most parking spaces are 8-9 feet wide, so your goal is to turn within two of them, side x side and you will get down to 1-1/2 spaces wide.

The road all of a sudden will be so wide, and making tight U turns will become effortless.

When you get good, you can then start to employ the traditional rear brake and feathering clutch techniques' and almost stand the girl still upright without fear of dropping her.

That is it! Try it and share some of your tips you have learned.
Let me know if it works for you!
Forgot to ad:
If you have access to a video camera, use it to review your head, control, and overall smoothness. It is an eye opener!
 

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I teach the MSF Experienced Riders Course (ERC) now known as BRC2. In that course, the student rides their own bike and we require them to complete a figure eight, a U turn to the left and U turn to the right in a box measuring 24'x70'. When I demo the box, I try and keep my U turns within the 20'x60' box used for the beginner's course. The technique we use is friction zone, head turn, counter weighting and drag rear brake if needed.

I like the drill SmokinJoe started this thread with. Use to get my Road King and RT to the lock but never really trusted myself enough to do the same on the K1600. Must work on doing the throttle only circle.

Thanks for the write up SmolinJoe. :gm
 

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Discussion Starter #15
I like the drill SmokinJoe started this thread with. Use to get my Road King and RT to the lock but never really trusted myself enough to do the same on the K1600. Must work on doing the throttle only circle.

Thanks for the write up SmolinJoe. :gm
You are welcome and PLEASE ad any additional hints or advise once you had a chance to give her a whirl!
 

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I worked on the "Full Lock" turns on my GSW, yesterday, because it is much lighter to handle. Needed to put my foot down a couple times which would have been disastrous for my GT. The GSW is not smooth in idle while in the tight turns, so needed to use clutch and throttle. I do need to practice, though. Keeping the head turned to the max into the turn takes practice.
 

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With or without the clutch (friction zone) and rear brake, many find it helpful to move closer to the gas tank. Get your knees tight with it. Many people find it easier to go left because utilizing the throttle is easier. When you turn right, you may need to adjust your grip on the throttle. Just be aware that it may be more difficult to roll it on if you need it. Turn your head as far as you can in the direction you are turning and keep your eyes looking up, not at the ground.
 

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Well, I've had a chance to practice a little. :eek:

Will be practicing some more. :k16:
 

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Discussion Starter #19
I worked on the "Full Lock" turns on my GSW, yesterday, because it is much lighter to handle. Needed to put my foot down a couple times which would have been disastrous for my GT. The GSW is not smooth in idle while in the tight turns, so needed to use clutch and throttle. I do need to practice, though. Keeping the head turned to the max into the turn takes practice.
Remember to give some throttle rather than putting the foot down, the bike will stand right up! Never use front brake!
 
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